Virtualization tools provide net savings to tennis tour
IBM tools cut USOpen.org Web hosting costs by more than 23% since 2004
Computerworld - FLUSHING MEADOWS, N.Y. -- Since 2005, IBM has used virtualization technologies to distribute data processing workloads between three IT centers it uses to manage traffic for the U.S. Tennis Association's (USTA) USOpen.org Web site, significantly cutting hosting costs.
Since installing the IBM Virtualization Engine product two years ago, IBM said the Web site has easily handled massive increases in traffic during the USTA's annual two-week U.S. Open tournament while cutting IT infrastructure costs by more than 23% since 2004.
IBM runs the Web site under contract with the USTA. The association's 2007 tournament is slated to end this Sunday.
John J. Kent, a program manager at IBM's Worldwide Sponsorship Marketing group in Boston, said the virtualization hardware and software has allowed it to distributes data processes across three sites to ensure that the Web site remains available during the tournament. He noted that the site attracted more than 26 million visitors during the 2006 tournament, 2 million more than the previous year.
The site was able to support the increased use despite a flat IT budget, Kent added.
Each of the three IT centers houses three IBM P5-550 servers, which run a combination of IBM AIX and Linux applications used to support the USOpen.org Web site. Over the past 12 to 18 months, IBM has been incrementally adding Tivoli virtualization software to the further boost the capabilities of the computing environment, said Kristina Kloberdanz, a manager at IBM's Worldwide Sponsorship Marketing group in New York.
Prior to the start of this year's U.S. Open last week, IBM installed the Tivoli Provisioning Manager product to help its support team automatically provision software to 18 dispersed Web servers, said Kent. By using the provisioning software, IBM reduced the time it took to configure the servers while paring labor costs, he added.
"We're not sure how much time it has saved us, but it is definitely helping," said Kent. IBM is trying to determine how best to measure the time saved through the use of the automated tools. "Some of it is subjective," he acknowledged.
IBM has also used virtualization tools to add similar capabilities to sites it runs for other professional tennis tournaments, including Wimbledon, the French Open and the Australian Open. IBM credits the technology with cutting the cost per visit at each site by 40% since 2004.
In addition to the time and cost savings, the use of virtualization technologies has allowed the USTA to add more content to the USOpen.org Web site, Kent said. For instance, IBM Slam Tracker, a dashboard that lets visitors follow their favorite players, watch live matches in progress and receive real-time scoring updates, was added this year.
- Clearing the Network Hurdle to Cloud Deployment Although enthusiasm is high among IT pros for cloud services, an IDG Research Quick Poll survey found that, in fact, the cloud is...
- Accelerating the Delivery Microsoft Office 365 Many organizations use Office 365's cloud-based mail, collaboration and communication services as the dominant workload. However, as services move to the cloud, data...
- Virtually Delivered High Performance 3D Graphics "A picture is worth a thousand words." That old phrase is as true today as it ever was. Pictures (i.e., those with heavy...
- Who does NSS Labs "Recommend" for NGFW? In 2012, NSS Labs found that most available NGFW solutions "fell short in performance and security effectiveness." In 2013 NSS Labs noted "marked...
- Live Webcast IBM FlashSystem V840: Leveraging Software-Defined Flash to Drive Your Business With end-to-end, tightly integrated functionality and super-fast flash technology, products like IBM FlashSystem V840 Enterprise Performance Solution empower businesses to leverage the efficiency...
- What should I look for in a Next Generation Firewall? SANS Provides Guidance With so many vendors claiming to have a Next Generation Firewall (NGFW), it can be difficult to tell what makes each one different....
- IBM FlashSystem V840: Leveraging Software-Defined Flash to Drive Your Business With end-to-end, tightly integrated functionality and super-fast flash technology, products like IBM FlashSystem V840 Enterprise Performance Solution empower businesses to leverage the efficiency... All Networking White Papers | Webcasts
Our new bimonthly Internet of Things newsletter helps you keep pace with the rapidly evolving technologies, trends and developments related to the IoT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!